Clorox, the household brand leader in bleach and cleaning products, has announced that it will reach net-zero carbon emissions by 2050 while drastically reducing carbon emissions from multiple production phases by 2030. “As a health and wellness company at heart, we recognize that the long-term well-being of future generations depends on the health of our planet,” said Linda Rendle, CEO, in a statement to investors this month.
The Clorox Company (“Clorox”), previously known as The Clorox Chemical Company, relocated to Oakland, CA in 2020. The organization has been a publicly traded Fortune 500 company since 1999 and owns a variety of subsidiaries ranging from food to household goods, to pet care. The company was briefly owned by Procter & Gamble, a consumer goods conglomerate, but was divested at the instruction of the Federal Trade Commission in 1969. They reentered into a Joint Venture agreement with one another in 2002.
In a September statement to its shareholders, Clorox outlined its plan to reach net-zero carbon emissions over the next two and a half decades across all three of their value chain lines (also referred to as “scopes”). A more timely goal sits on the horizon as well: Clorox’s plan to cut production emissions by 50% across two out of three of their “scopes” by 2030.
The company’s corporate team writes that the measures, which are rooted in science to accurately calculate emission trajectory and business development, are “in line with the Paris Agreement.”
Although the news follows in kind with other announcements this fiscal year from consumer brands, The Clorox Company is no stranger to sustainability initiatives. In 2008, the household megacorporation launched the world’s first mainstream “green cleaning” line, and by 2011 the organization had integrated corporate social responsibility (now commonly referred to as “ESG,” or environmental social governance) into their business framework and development objectives. In 2015, Clorox was a signatory of a United Nations Act that helped propel corporate sustainability onto the world stage. Most recently in 2019, Clorox made it into the exclusive Barron’s 100 Most Sustainable U.S. Companies list. Now, they are yet again setting high standards for corporations with the ability to impact climate change.
Most recently in January 2021, Clorox reached an impressive milestone: using 100% renewable energy for all Scope 1 and Scope 2 operations in their U.S. and Canada markets.
The September announcement by the 9,000-employee strong company outlined a handful of measures that would bring them to their goal in a timely manner. Most of the actionable goals for Scopes 1 and 2 involve packaging and shipping. Goals for 2050 will stem from Scope 3, which is rooted heavily in actual factory and production emissions — a longer term shift. “We are proud to announce these ambitious new targets as part of our commitment to reducing Clorox’s carbon footprint,” said Ed Huber, Clorox’s Chief Sustainability Officer.
According to their investor relations office, the accelerated steps include the following:
- 50% combined reduction in virgin plastic and fiber packaging by 2030
- 100% recyclable, reusable, or compostable packaging by 2025
- Double plastic PCR in packaging by 2030 (+50% by 2025)
- 100% global facilities zero-waste-to-landfill by 2030 (plants by 2025)
- 100% renewable electricity in the US and Canada in 2021
- Reduce cleaning products chemical footprint; annually report program progress beginning in calendar year 2020
- Publicly share Clorox restricted substances list for domestic retail cleaning products by the calendar year 2020
Additional goals from their IGNITE Strategy, which incorporates ESG principles, can be found here.
“Taking decisive climate action is essential to protecting our planet and communities and demonstrates our commitment to our purpose – to champion people to be well and thrive,” stated Rendle. “We have strong aspirations for decarbonizing our business as we accelerate our growth agenda for long-term value creation for all stakeholders.”